Transferring Skills Getting Harder


Rising complexity in developing chips at advanced nodes, and an almost perpetual barrage of new engineering challenges at each new node, are making it more difficult for everyone involved to maintain consistent skill levels across a growing number of interrelated technologies. The result is that engineers are being forced to specialize, but when they work with other engineers with different ... » read more

Expose Transistor-Level Yield Limiters With Cell-Aware Diagnosis


Cell-aware diagnosis is a new and effective method to perform transistor-level diagnosis to identify defects inside standard cells. It leverages fault models derived from analog simulation and uses a fail data collection and diagnosis flow identical to that of traditional diagnosis. Cell-aware diagnosis in Tessent Diagnosis is the result of over 10 years of research in cell-aware test and was d... » read more

BEOL Issues At 10nm And 7nm


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss problems with the back end of line at leading-edge nodes with Craig Child, senior manager and deputy director for [getentity id="22819" e_name="GlobalFoundries'"] advanced technology development integration unit; Paul Besser, senior technology director at [getentity id="22820" comment="Lam Research"]; David Fried, CTO at [getentity id="22210" e_name... » read more

Stacked Die Changes


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss advanced packaging with David Pan, associate professor in the department of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Texas; Max Min, senior technical manager at [getentity id="22865" e_name="Samsung"]; John Hunt, senior director of engineering at ASE; and Sitaram Arkalgud, vice president of 3D portfolio and technologies at Invensas. ... » read more

Faster Time To Yield


Michael Jamiolkowski, president and CEO of Coventor, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about ways improve yield ramp and optimize designs. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Why does it take so long to get a chip all the way through to manufacturing? Jamiolkowski: There are three parts to that. There is a research side. You want to be able to explore new th... » read more

Pattern Matching In Test And Yield Analysis


By Jonathan Muirhead and Geir Eide It’s no secret that a successful yield ramp directly impacts integrated circuit (IC) product cost and time-to-market. Tools and techniques that help companies ramp to volume faster, while also reducing process and design variability, can be the difference between profit and loss in a competitive market. And while pattern matching technology has been aroun... » read more

Pattern Matching in Design and Verification


Pattern matching (PM) was first introduced as the semiconductor industry began to shift from simple one-dimensional rule checks to the two-dimensional checks required by sub-resolution lithography. These rule checks proved far more complex to write, hard to code for fast runtimes, and difficult to debug. Incorporating an automated visual capture and compare process enabled designers to define t... » read more

Internet of FD-SOI Things?


Are fully-depleted silicon-on-insulator (FD-SOI) wafers having a moment? Certainly SOI wafers are not new. Soitec’s SmartCut layer transfer technology was patented in 1994, and wafers with implanted oxide layers were available before that. Still, adoption of SOI wafers has been limited. Though they offer improved device isolation and reduced parasitics, the increased wafer cost has been an ob... » read more

The Growing Role Of Extended Supply Chain Collaboration


At the executive keynote panel held at Semicon West 2015, one of the key industry challenges discussed was the growing need for closer collaboration between supply chain partners in order to support the fast time to market and shortened product lifecycles of today’s consumer electronics. Traditionally, the yield ramp phase has been a critical time to resolve manufacturing issues, enable high ... » read more

Faster Time To Root Cause With Diagnosis-Driven Yield Analysis


ICs developed at advanced technology nodes of 65 nm and below exhibit an increased sensitivity to small manufacturing variations. New design-specific and feature-sensitive failure mechanisms are on the rise. Complex variability issues that involve interactions between process and layout features can mask systematic yield issues. Without improved yield analysis methods, time-to-volume is delayed... » read more

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